Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Ray Dorset

Bought in a charity shop today for a pound. This LP from 1972 on the Boulevard label is actually a compilation of songs Ray did with Good Earth from two LP's on the Saga label in 1968. Not a patch on what he did later with Mungo Jerry - these are bluesy rockers and sound rather like demos to me.

"Ray Dorset had his moment in the spotlight when his band, Mungo Jerry, recorded one of the biggest selling hits of 1970. A skiffle-style blues, "In The Summertime", sold more than thirty million copies worldwide and became a classic of the summer season. It topped the charts a second time when a version by Shaggy was featured in the film, Flipper. The song has also been recorded by Elton John and Bob Dylan. Dorset received two Ivor Novello awards as songwriter.

Dorset was already a veteran performer when he formed Mungo Jerry in 1969. His first band, the Blue Moon Skiffle Group, featuring Phil Collins on drums, was formed when he was eleven years old. Three years later, he briefly joined Jackie Edwards's group. In the early-1960s, his band, the Concords shared a weekly gig at the Station Tavern in Richmond with the Rolling Stones.

Forming a new band, Good Earth, with keyboardist Colin Earle, guitar, kazoo and jug player Paul King, upright bassist Mike Cole and washboard Joe Rush, Dorset signed with independent label, Saga. When executives of the label discovered that the band was taking a jug band-influenced approach, their contract was dropped.

Moving to Dawn Records, and changing their name to Mungo Jerry. Dorset and the band were an immediate success. Their debut performance, at a festival in Hollywood, a small village near Newcastle-Under-Lyme, put them on the same bill as such top acts as the Grateful Dead, Jose Feliciano, Ginger Baker's Air Force and Black Sabbath. Their good-humored music, however, captured the headlines. "

Ray Dorset - Jack Sly

Ray Dorset - Unwashed, Unwanted

Ray Dorset - Let Me Come Into Your Party

Ray Dorset - Help Yourself

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